Less familiar discrimination women face in the workplace

| Dec 11, 2017 | blog |

Most employment law issues concerning females tend to focus on overt, prevalent behaviors, such as sexual harassment, pregnancy discrimination and too little pay. These are the stories that make the news most often. Yet they are not the only ways in which women face challenges at the workplace.

Other common ones include discrimination based on age and marital status. The following are more subtle, causing you to overlook these ways you may not be receiving fair treatment from a current or potential employer.

Femininity

Unfortunately, sometimes getting a new job relies on more than just experience and performance. It sometimes also depends on how well you fit the work culture of the place considering hiring you. This can be problematic in male-dominated industries that favor traditional male camaraderie and personality. Your gentle manner or lack of interest in drinking and sports can be deterrents although you are otherwise qualified for the position and a good fit for the team.

Furthermore, you may only receive positions or tasks that are stereotypically female, holding you back from duties more relevant to your capabilities and putting you at risk for mistreatment as an “inferior” from your peers. You may feel pressure to act more masculine, however the company culture defines it, in order to be successful or protect yourself from harassment, though this may backfire as well.

Expectations

If you are in a leadership role, your employer may expect more out of you than your male colleagues or give you harsher penalties for mistakes. You may also not earn the credit you deserve for achievements.

Mental health

Some employers do not know or remember that the Americans with Disabilities Act covers mental illnesses. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America shares that females are likelier to suffer from depression and anxiety. Your employer must take your mental health issues seriously and offer you the same protections and accommodations as those with physical disabilities. Disrespectful remarks and actions from coworkers about your emotional state may count as harassment.

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